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Creating a Site Design Plan : Comments

By Karen Morrill-McClure

April 13, 2005



April 14, 2005 12:11 AM

Great article Karen. My freelance web work has been with similar clients and I’ve taken a similar interview approach on my initial meetings. Your write up is a nice affirmation for me that what I’m doing makes sense and has given me some further food for thought. Thanks!

Andrew Henze Qwent

April 14, 2005 2:43 AM

Nice to see some real world information.

Andrew Henze

Jon Clark

April 14, 2005 2:43 AM

Good ideas presented here, Karen. The question to the client of “Why do you need a website?” is really one that I had overlooked. I figured if they were coming to me for a website they would have their own reasons that were none of my business, and that it was just my job to give them what they wanted. Asking this and your other questions will help make my life a lot easier.

Ali Hammouri

April 18, 2005 12:40 AM

Good Article, but when ask client
“Why do you need a website”
say simple answer and change saying client request images her and links there and more animation and request concerning design
I as designer why works?

Liesl Groberg

April 18, 2005 7:39 AM

Very timely for me. I am designing my first site “commercially,” i.e.- not for a friend or family member, at the moment, and your offerings make total sense. I think I have been guilty of answering some of those key questions on behalf of my client (at least in my head.) I’m learning. Thanks.


April 19, 2005 9:28 AM

I would also highly recommend “Web ReDesign: Workflow that Works” by Kelly Goto and Emily Gotler. Their roadmap for designing mid- to large-size sites should be everyone’s bible.

Hugo Tremblay

April 19, 2005 1:42 PM

After a few years of designing websites for small clients, I found out that these clients would often need a business advisor more than a website.

Most of the time, the very idea of organizing the organization around its customers (and not the other way around) seems novel to them, as if they had never really taken the time to analyze their customers’ needs and how to fulfill them.

It’s always a bit surprising to me, but in a sense, it makes my projects even more interesting and rewarding.


April 26, 2005 5:39 AM

Thanks for that Karen, I’ve often read a lot of how to approach design planning but I’ve often found that the article is aimed at a high scale approach.

I’m hoping to start my own design freelance in the future and this will prove a useful guide at the right scale of work I’ll be taking on.

P.J. Onori

April 28, 2005 12:24 PM

Very good article. I notice myself many times ignoring the end-user and focusing more on the visual appearance of the site. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.

It’s good to read things like this to keep me in line. :)

Norman Pearce

April 29, 2005 1:46 AM

I am really just learning the basics of web design using the Dreamweaver suite. I very much appreciate this useful article about the practical approach for planning a web site.
As with many other applications, we read many articles about the technical aspects of creating say word templates or spreadsheets but very few guidelines about the practical approach that should be used when creating them for third parties. I have a very basic set of questions, what do you do? what do you need? what does your client/customer need?
Great article, thank you.

Richard Bryson

May 14, 2005 5:41 AM

You’re wise to talk about needs, goals and results as these often get forgotten by staff due to being swamped by their everyday tasks. Not asking the big questions can mean that more work has to be done at a later date, work that wasn’t outlined in the original spec. Consequently, the site becomes somewhat patched up rather than a seamless environment.
Designing a website means that you are not only the designer but you’re also the project manager requiring you to constantly keep in mind how the components that form the site fit together and meet the requirements of the business.
Thanks for putting this together, Karen.

Lisa Giovanni

May 31, 2005 9:25 AM

Thanks for the article, Karen. I think that I actually learned something.

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